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NPP-CPI take on BJP in Inner Manipur Lok Sabha seat

IANS  |  Imphal 

The political fate of 11 candidates, including Manipur's former top official, a popular and a Left candidate supported by the constituent of the BJP-led ruling alliance, will be at stake when the Inner Lok Sabha constituency goes to the polls in the second phase of polling on Thursday.

The ruling (BJP) has again nominated R.K. Ranjan Singh, who unsuccessfully contested the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, while the has replaced its sitting with former

Meghalaya's ruling (NPP), which is a leading coalition partner in with all its four legislators serving as Ministers including Yumnam Joykumar as the Deputy Minister, has tied up with the Communist Party of (CPI) a week before the polls began on April 11 and is supporting its candidate, M. Nara.

"I have contested 12 elections. I find this election, which is likely to be my last, to be the happiest one.

"I am penniless and depend mostly on crowd funding. Several lakhs of rupees are being donated by the people. If I get elected, I shall not fail them and will fight for their various problems," Nara said.

Meanwhile, the is making all efforts to retain the Inner seat. It has been attacking the BJP on various issues, particularly the controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, which had raised a furore in the northeast.

"BJP is trying to woo the voters with imaginary issues such as the hill and valley divide. Despite the agitations, BJP leaders have been announcing in public meetings that the Centre shall implement the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 by July.

"People in the northeast states have agitated fearing being swamped by the people who will be allowed to migrate and settle (in the region). The people who are against this Bill shall not vote for the BJP," state said.

Though Singh has contended that the Bill is not against the northeast region with a clause to protect the people of Manipur to be added and that he would be the first to resign if it goes against the interest of the people, Congress legislature and former has quipped that "it will be immaterial whether Biren resigns or not".

R.K. Somorendro, who is fighting as an Independent candidate, has asserted that he would fight for Manipur's issues "without restrictions from the high commands and that is why I am an Independent".

However, he faced a major setback on Tuesday when film personalities led by singer-actor Boney-M and R.K. Hemabati went around the Women's Market canvassing for the BJP candidate, instead of supporting him.

Explaining their choice, Boney-M said that they were supporting the BJP candidate as gratitude for the Manipur Film Policy Act.

R.K. Anand, who resigned from last month along with four other ex-MLAs, is the candidate for North East Development Party (NEIDP). "An aggressive local party alone could champion the cause of the people and that is why I am contesting from this party," Anand said.

All preparations have been made for Thursday's polling and election officials have left Imphal for the different polling stations on Wednesday, officials said.

(CEO) P.K. Singh said that steps have been taken for an incident-free polling on Thursday.

Polling for Manipur's other seat -- Outer Manipur (reserved) -- was held on April 11 in the first phase of the Lok Sabha elections.

--IANS

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, April 17 2019. 18:48 IST
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